What’s the difference between an Oxford and a Brogue?

Ever wondered what distinguishes an Oxford shoe from a Brogue?

We’re often asked when it’s suitable to wear an Oxford rather than a Brogue, so we thought we’d share a few gems of wisdom that may help you grasp the subtle differences between the two. The first may come as a surprise…

One is a type of shoe, the other…isn’t.

Bet you didn’t expect that, did you, but it’s true! An Oxford is a type of shoe, a Brogue is a shoe that has perforated patterns in the leather.

An Oxford is an established style that relates to the closed lace design of the shoe –  this closed lace look is achieved when the eyelets are sewn underneath and can’t be seen on the top, creating a sharp, clean look with a beautifully slim silhouette. Teamed with a well-cut suit, It’s these virtues that have kept the Oxford shoe as the traditional, classic choice when it comes to corporate business environments and black tie events. 

Shoes with ‘broguing’ – which is the term used to describe the decorative perforations on the leather- have traditionally been considered ‘country shoes’, having a more casual feel to them and therefore rendering them less suitable for the city gent. But, time moves on and views change…

But wait, doesn’t that mean an Oxford shoe can also be a Brogue?

Yes, it does! As we’ve mentioned, the word brogue simply relates to the patterned perforations around the seams or on the toe of a shoe. Because of this, many types of shoes can technically be called a brogue. So, with that in mind, it’s perfectly feasible that you might wear an Oxford Brogue which would simply be an Oxford shoe that features pattern perforations on the toe or seams. 

Is one considered smarter than the other?

As we’ve said, the term Oxford and Brogue are not always mutually exclusive, meaning that you can wear a very smart pair of Oxford shoes that happen to have some stylish patterns in the leather, in which case you have a very smart pair of Oxford Brogues. In modern society, Oxfords or Brogues (or a combination of the two if you’re feeling adventurous!) are both considered to be classically stylish and provide the perfect finishing touch to a sharp suit or outfit.

What about colour?

Traditionally, black has always been considered the top dog when it comes to Oxfords, but, as we said, times change and modern society’s views on what is deemed ‘appropriate’ business attire is rather different to those of the Victorians! 

Blacks, browns and tan are the current favourites, but there are a whole plethora of colours available these days, depending on what floats your boat!
Here at Astares, we have some stunning Oxfords and Brogues in store at the moment – with our bestselling tan brogue remains top of the charts, so don’t miss out if you’re on the hunt for your new favourite pair of shoes – we may have just what you’re looking for!

Grab yourself a bargain!

Lucky for you, we have a fabulous sale on some of our stunning shoes at the moment. Don’t hang around, they’ll be snapped up fast. Enjoy!